Giant cystic arachnoid granulations: A rare cause of lytic skull lesions

Andrew E. Rosenberg, John X. O'Connell, Robert G. Ojemann, Milton J. Plata, William E. Palmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


Aracnoid granulations provide the pathway for drainage of cerebrospinal fluid from the subarachnoid space into the dural venous sinus system. They frequently produce small, well-defined indentations on the inner table of the calvarium that are easily recognized on radiographic studies and gross examination of the skull. We report a series of four giant cystic arachnoid granulations presenting as large "destructive" osteolytic lesions that required surgical exploration. The cysts were filled with cerebrospinal fluid and were delineated by a thin fibrous wall that contained peripheral clusters of arachnoid cells. We discuss the pathologic and radiographic differential diagnosis of osteolytic skull lesions and present a hypothesis regarding the formation of giant cystic arachnoid granulations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-441
Number of pages4
JournalHuman pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • arachnoid granulations
  • Pacchionian granulations
  • skull

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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